Thanks to everyone who came down for a brilliant cake silled Apple Day at Bridgend Allotments. We now have almost 40 members of the group that are interested in supporting the renovation of the farmhouse. We would like this to grow as much as possible then please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for a membership form.
This is some of the feedback, thoughts and comments received from folk on Saturday:
- Everyone we spoke to was very positive and supportive of what we have been suggesting so far. There was a strong emphasis and interest in the development of training services that could link in with ILA conservation and horticultural trainging - this was expressed by some residents over from Niddrie and Craigmillar.
- One concern to consider was security and that if we were to take ownership we would have responsibility of putting up a fence around the building, and also having to consider a nightime warden (although this could of course benefit the allotments a lot too).
- There was interest from Black Diamond FM who hope to be following the progress and helping to raise awareness through radio.
- Partnerships with lots of local groups and charities was mentioned as being very important. If anyone is able to get in contact with other groups we so far haven't and approach them to see if they would be interested in any support or partnerhsip then please do.
- It was also suggested that some local firms may be willing to help support the venture financially with small sums - so a form of fundraising. It was suggested we write a letter to send out asking businesses about this.
- On fundraising, there was an idea for a 'buy a tile' scheme to repair the roof. If we could ask all interested in ebing memebrs and supporting the restoration to 'buy a tile' for a small amount then maybe we could get that done soon.
- A couple people mentioned the potential of 'buddy' schemes between older and younger people that could be utilised through the building.
- Supposedly the government are helping to pay for young apprenticeships and that if there were to be some involved in the design and build then this could be incorporated.
- Autism Initiatives are running programs at the Hermiatge which incorporate DIY and build programs so could potentially be approached about ideas and support.
- Lots of people mentioned different small pots of funding for particular aspects that could be applied for. We need to identify what sort of exact function the property could have and what exact funders might assist with this once a renovation was to take place.
- Finally - the importance of the immediacy of the use of food was emphasised, and of utilising the 'plough to plate' possibilities all on one site - moving from an abundant allotment of food and produce to a community cafe/kitchen and workshop/study room.
On another note - I also found out about preserving your veg through the winter - and here's a little link to some info on that: http://www.selfsufficientish.com/main/blog.php/2008/07/06/making-a-potato-clamp-and-other-ways-of-storing-vegetables-by-andy-hamilton/
We are having our next steering group meeting at 18.30 on Monday 18th at Inch Community Centre if anyone is able to attend.